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Luncheon: Edward J. Grace

Date: June 12, 2024
Time: 11:15 AM – 2:00 PM

The Vineyards

400 Vineyards Boulevard, Naples, FL 34119

During the reception from 11:15am to 12 noon in the Lobby of the Vineyards Country Club the President is reporting on actual topics from the board. 

SPEAKER: Edward J. Grace
TITLE: “Review of Apollo 13 & a Voyage to Mars”

The Apollo Program was the first step of humans entering into outer space. Astronauts left Earth orbit for the first time and set foot upon the moon. The 1960’s and 1970’s were the time when driven by the race of cold war between the USA and Russia this endeavor was achieved. The race was decided in favor of the USA. However, Apollo 13 almost brought the Program to a halt as the crew of three astronauts had to fight for their lives after an oxygen tank exploded in the service module and they had to use the life support system of the lunar module to return safely to earth. Ever since manned space flight was established, the dream to travel to Mars has driven the development of the technology for the planned voyage. Unmanned missions to Mars as well as longer duration manned flights in the low earth orbit of the International Space Station have started to pave the way to this next big step for mankind. Mars is in many ways close to Earth when it comes to atmosphere, weather, gravity, and other factors. It is anticipated that humans will be able to survive on Mars much easier than on any other planet of our solar system. Today the race about flying to Mars has turned into full swing and even private companies are participating. Will we see humans on Mars within the next 10-15 years? This presentation shall provide some outlook and answers on this question.

Edward J. Grace worked on Project Apollo from 1963 to 1972 while employed at the MIT Instrumentation/Draper Laboratory in Cambridge, MA as a Principle Engineer. MIT Draper had a contract with NASA to design and develop the Primary Guidance Navigation & Control System (PGNCS) used for the Apollo Command and Lunar Modules during flight missions. The PGNCS included the Apollo Guidance Computer, its operating system software and flight specific mission software used for each of the Apollo flights. Ed was working at the Johnson Space Center Houston in support of NASA Mission Control Center (MCC) personnel for the duration of the Apollo 13 mission and was a member of the Apollo 13 Mission Operations Team awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Richard Nixon.


Rolls & Butter
Chicken Francaise (chicken breast lightly coated in egg and parsley, lemon white wine butter sauce, farro rice blend, seasonal vegetables)
Fruit Bowl